The Washington Post contains an article on a recent survey by Oklahoma State University where over 80 percent of Americans support “mandatory labels on foods containing DNA,”
The Oklahoma State survey result is probably an example of the intersection between scientific ignorance and political ignorance, both of which are widespread.The most obvious explanation for the data is that most of these people don’t really understand what DNA is, and don’t realize that it is contained in almost all food. When they read that a strange substance called “DNA” might be included in their food, they might suspect that this is some dangerous chemical inserted by greedy corporations for their own nefarious purposes.
The article discusses the wider issue of scientific ignorance driving policy decisions, and there is some further comment at io9. A summary of the full survey results is available (PDF).
I misunderstood when I first read the title.
I thought maybe they were talking about DNA testing food to see what species are in it kind of like how they survey microbe populations. It made sense to me, to see how much weed material makes it into your grain for example.
They were doing similar with fish in Canada and finding that most fish was mis-labeled as far a species. Luckily the fish companies lobbied for smaller government and got that part of government shrunk to nothing. Small government is the best thing for the freedom of business to rip people off and as a bonus the government can put all the savings into spying on citizens to make sure they can't vote if they're considering voting for one of the other parties.